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How to make road traffic "freeway traffic lines" sbuilderx 3.15 for P3D? (SOLVED)

@JRobinson ,

I promise I won't be bugging you so much today anymore
freeway_square.JPG
. This can be a last question for today. FREEWAY TRAFFIC/make poly/make lines/delete poly/ I have these two [lines] connected (as on the picture attached).
How can I avoid this?

Thank you.
 
There's this thing they call "clip level", the way vector scenery is designed everything clips either on QMID 11 boundaries or in the case of traffic lines QMID 15 boundaries. Technically you should always exclude and replace an entire QMID 15 cell when you're doing traffic lines (and you should always exclude and replace an entire QMID 11 cell when you're doing anything else), that way you know there's no way something underneath it in the scenery library can interfere, whether it be on your own system, your buddies system, your customers system, or whoever regardless of whether they have FTX Vector, UTX, or default CVXs running underneath your scenery.

In Sbuilder you can turn on QMID 15 grids (View > QMID level > 15, and then with the line tool active you can right click your line and choose "slice to QMID 15" which does exactly that, cuts the line wherever it crosses a QMID 15 boundary. If you plan for it you can start your initial line just outside a QMID 15 boundary and when you get to this point you're at you can just slice that little part off, which is what I did in that .spb I posted. Then you throw down a 3-cornered polygon, tag it "exclude all freeway traffic", right click and "fill to QMID 15". You now have a perfect traffic replacement that can't be affected by anything below it in the scenery library.

It doesn't always work that way though so here's another trick. Save your project, select the traffic line, then do Select > Invert selection. Hit the delete key leaving nothing but your traffic line. Whatever you do don't save your project in this state! Now do File > export > SbuilderX SBX and export your line, you'll "append this back into your project again later. After that, right click your line and do "manual check", you'll get a little dialog with some instructions, basically you cycle through all the points using your up/down arrow keys and you can hit delete to remove one or hold down the delete key to delete a bunch of them in rapid succession. Delete all the points down one lane of your traffic line including the U-turn at the end. Right click the line and set width to .5m or so, then right click again and do set transparency, turn it bright pink or something, you do this so you can tell the lines apart when you import your recently saved SBX back into the project. Now do File > Append > SBuilderX SBX and import the line you just exported. On the imported line do "manual check" again, this time deleting all the points for the opposite lane plus the U-turn. When you're finished you'll have the two individual lines side by side without the U-turns on either end. Export them to SBX again, both together this time and close your project without saving. Open the project back up, delete the existing traffic lines, and append the SBX you just exported. Now save and compile and you should be good to go.

EDIT: You can see how you might click out a road, asphalt, 2 lanes, undivided median for example, and then use the export SBX trick to bring it back into your project again, this time turning it into a traffic line with the convert to poly/make line/delete poly process. Saves a lot of clicking, and your road traffic will follow your vector road perfectly.

It's worth noting that you can also export your line as an ESRI shape or a Surfer BLN as well, either way works, the SBX and BLN options are basically just text files, BLN being the simplest. Sometimes it comes in handy being able to edit either the SBX or BLN in a text editor like Notepad++. The .shp is binary and can't be edited, but it can be used with GIS applications, for example you mentioned earlier blend masking out your PR so the vector road could show through, you could conceivably export your road as a .shp and use gdal_rasterize to burn it onto a .tif you could import into your blend mask. That's providing you know the exact corner coordinates and pixel dimensions of your photoreal source. Just an FYI, in practice it's probably easier to do it manually in PhotoShop, lol.
 
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There's this thing they call "clip level", the way vector scenery is designed everything clips either on QMID 11 boundaries or in the case of traffic lines QMID 15 boundaries. Technically you should always exclude and replace an entire QMID 15 cell when you're doing traffic lines (and you should always exclude and replace an entire QMID 11 cell when you're doing anything else), that way you know there's no way something underneath it in the scenery library can interfere, whether it be on your own system, your buddies system, your customers system, or whoever regardless of whether they have FTX Vector, UTX, or default CVXs running underneath your scenery.

In Sbuilder you can turn on QMID 15 grids (View > QMID level > 15, and then with the line tool active you can right click your line and choose "slice to QMID 15" which does exactly that, cuts the line wherever it crosses a QMID 15 boundary. If you plan for it you can start your initial line just outside a QMID 15 boundary and when you get to this point you're at you can just slice that little part off, which is what I did in that .spb I posted. Then you throw down a 3-cornered polygon, tag it "exclude all freeway traffic", right click and "fill to QMID 15". You now have a perfect traffic replacement that can't be affected by anything below it in the scenery library.

It doesn't always work that way though so here's another trick. Save your project, select the traffic line, then do Select > Invert selection. Hit the delete key leaving nothing but your traffic line. Whatever you do don't save your project in this state! Now do File > export > SbuilderX SBX and export your line, you'll "append this back into your project again later. After that, right click your line and do "manual check", you'll get a little dialog with some instructions, basically you cycle through all the points using your up/down arrow keys and you can hit delete to remove one or hold down the delete key to delete a bunch of them in rapid succession. Delete all the points down one lane of your traffic line including the U-turn at the end. Right click the line and set width to .5m or so, then right click again and do set transparency, turn it bright pink or something, you do this so you can tell the lines apart when you import your recently saved SBX back into the project. Now do File > Append > SBuilderX SBX and import the line you just exported. On the imported line do "manual check" again, this time deleting all the points for the opposite lane plus the U-turn. When you're finished you'll have the two individual lines side by side without the U-turns on either end. Export them to SBX again, both together this time and close your project without saving. Open the project back up, delete the existing traffic lines, and append the SBX you just exported. Now save and compile and you should be good to go.

EDIT: You can see how you might click out a road, asphalt, 2 lanes, undivided median for example, and then use the export SBX trick to bring it back into your project again, this time turning it into a traffic line with the convert to poly/make line/delete poly process. Saves a lot of clicking, and your road traffic will follow your vector road perfectly.

It's worth noting that you can also export your line as an ESRI shape or a Surfer BLN as well, either way works, the SBX and BLN options are basically just text files, BLN being the simplest. Sometimes it comes in handy being able to edit either the SBX or BLN in a text editor like Notepad++. The .shp is binary and can't be edited, but it can be used with GIS applications, for example you mentioned earlier blend masking out your PR so the vector road could show through, you could conceivably export your road as a .shp and use gdal_rasterize to burn it onto a .tif you could import into your blend mask. That's providing you know the exact corner coordinates and pixel dimensions of your photoreal source. Just an FYI, in practice it's probably easier to do it manually in PhotoShop, lol.
Okay, so, I'm going to try this later or in the early morning because I honestly want to eliminate the U-TURN. So, I will report back when I do it.

Thank you again, @JRobinson
 
@JRobinson ,

So I did just the first part of your instruction about the slicing with QMID 15 and cutting lines. It worked like like you explained. And I thank you. Yet, I did not proceed with the other instructions, but I'll use them in the future for just in case.

My next question is, how can I make a slope area, like a dent in a grass area of the airport? I was able to do it nicely with ADE but I wonder how is it possible in sbuilderx?
I've tried the AB_FLATTEN to a certain altitude, yet nothing. Right now I have an AB_FLATTEN to the airport altitude all through out the area.

Can you teach me how to do a 15 foot slope area / dent in a grass area between taxi ways?

Thank you.:cool:
 
I've never really been happy with trying to contour an area that small TBH. It appears the first thing you have to do is put down a small Exclude_All_Airport_Boundaries poly to get rid of the default AB_Flatten_MaskClassMap_ExcludeAutoGen poly or your AB_Flattens will never have any effect. Then I think the best bet would be to click out a new background poly and assign it a constant elevation, then click out a poly for each grass area inside the runway/taxiway network. You can right click those and choose "set as hole", it will ask you to define the parent poly so just click on the edge of the main background poly. Inside the hole you'd need to build a network of triangular and rectangular polys to give you the indentations. You can right click any point in any poly and do "properties" to assign it an elevation. They come out rough IMO but if you keep fiddling around with the polys, maybe trying smaller ones/larger ones, shuffling the points around a bit you can usually make them work. To make them perfect I'd be inclined to build a model (or multiple models) in gmax and texture them, use the AB_Flattens to make some garish chasms in the ground and place the model(s) over the holes to cover them up.
 
I've never really been happy with trying to contour an area that small TBH. It appears the first thing you have to do is put down a small Exclude_All_Airport_Boundaries poly to get rid of the default AB_Flatten_MaskClassMap_ExcludeAutoGen poly or your AB_Flattens will never have any effect. Then I think the best bet would be to click out a new background poly and assign it a constant elevation, then click out a poly for each grass area inside the runway/taxiway network. You can right click those and choose "set as hole", it will ask you to define the parent poly so just click on the edge of the main background poly. Inside the hole you'd need to build a network of triangular and rectangular polys to give you the indentations. You can right click any point in any poly and do "properties" to assign it an elevation. They come out rough IMO but if you keep fiddling around with the polys, maybe trying smaller ones/larger ones, shuffling the points around a bit you can usually make them work. To make them perfect I'd be inclined to build a model (or multiple models) in gmax and texture them, use the AB_Flattens to make some garish chasms in the ground and place the model(s) over the holes to cover them up.
Very interesting. I'll try that later tonight. THANKS!
 
:) @JRobinson ,

So it worked. The "dent/lower level grass ditch," is my AB_FLATTEN + SET ALTITUDE + on top of that I placed another poly with EXCLUDE_ALL_TERRAIN_ITEMS (no altitude needed). I already had on top of it all another AB_FLATTEN for my airport custom-polys and be in the same page with P3D default airport's altitude. So I had to tell sbuilderx to do another AB_FLATTEN but it was going to work with another AB_FLATTEN already covering majority of the scenery so asking for an exclude helped.

The [Make Hole] action didn't work, only once but that didn't show as a hole. Nonetheless, everything is looking great, thank you for your support, @JRobinson !
:wave:
 
:) @JRobinson ,

So it worked. The "dent/lower level grass ditch," is my AB_FLATTEN + SET ALTITUDE + on top of that I placed another poly with EXCLUDE_ALL_TERRAIN_ITEMS (no altitude needed). I already had on top of it all another AB_FLATTEN for my airport custom-polys and be in the same page with P3D default airport's altitude. So I had to tell sbuilderx to do another AB_FLATTEN but it was going to work with another AB_FLATTEN already covering majority of the scenery so asking for an exclude helped.

The [Make Hole] action didn't work, only once but that didn't show as a hole. Nonetheless, everything is looking great, thank you for your support, @JRobinson !
:wave:
Disregard my previous reply, this method didn't work because I did not notice that an entire brand new scenery arose from the ocean. But I will leave troubleshoot it later as I progress the job. And I will post the formula.
 
I've had some limited success with including altered copies of default textures in my own project's texture folder. Haven't tried it with any bridge textures however but it seems to work for road textures and shoreline textures. The trick will be figuring out which texture is being used, I think it's materials.spb in the Autogen folder that dictates that, there's a human-readable .xml version in "Prepar3D v4 SDK 4.5.13.32097\World\Autogeneration\Autogen source xml" (I'm going to guess you need to modify BridgeSides.dds and BridgeSides_lm.dds located in the scenery\global\texture folder but it probably depends on the type of bridge you used). You could try copying it (them) into your texture folder and modifying them to see if you get the result you want.
 
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